Deadline for application: 17 April 2017
Fair Trials is an international human rights NGO, which exists to build respect for the right to a fair trial in criminal cases. It has grown gradually over the past five years and has an established track-record as a trusted voice on criminal justice.
Fair Trials is seeking to appoint a Researcher in its Brussels office. The Researcher will be a member of Fair Trials’ global Campaigns and Communications Team and will be tasked with leading Fair Trials’ efforts to document, raise awareness of, and campaign against miscarriages of justice and breaches of the right to a fair trial occurring across Europe. Working with the broader Fair Trials team and with Fair Trials’ national partners, the Researcher will lead related research projects and will design, develop and implement international, regional and national-level campaigns seeking to end fair trials abuses.
The post of Researcher is full-time. The post will be based in Fair Trials’ Brussels office, with frequent travel throughout Europe, and occasionally further afield. You will work actively with other members of Fair Trials’ staff team in London, Brussels and Washington, DC, as well as with partners in countries across Europe. You will report directly to the Regional Director (Europe) and will be an active member of the Campaigns and Communications Team.
This is an excellent opportunity to play a crucial role in a small and dynamic human rights NGO at an exciting time in its development.
• Lead Fair Trials’ work to document individual miscarriages of justice and breaches of the right to a fair trial in Europe.
• Highlight the impact of fair trials abuses on the lives of individuals caught up in European criminal justice systems and place fair trials abuses in the broader political, social and economic contexts.
• Design, develop and implement international, regional and (with Fair Trials’ partners and members of its Legal Experts Advisory Panel (LEAP)) national-level campaigns seeking to end fair trials abuses.
• Develop, fundraise for, coordinate and implement multi-country and multi-partner projects related to documenting and/or campaigning against abusive practices
• Research, monitor and document miscarriages of justice, cases in which there are breaches of the right to a fair trial across Europe, and abusive practices used by criminal justice authorities in European countries.
• Identify, monitor and follow-up on cross-border criminal justice cases involving European countries, in particular those cases in which there is a risk of human rights abuse in the country to which a suspect or accused person has been or could be extradited or surrendered to.
• Design research methodologies, coordinate and/or implement pan-European research projects and activities aimed at documenting individual fair trials abuses or abusive practices, often in partnership with a range of local NGO partners and/or member of Fair Trials’ Legal Experts Advisory Panel.
• Write accurate, unbiased, comprehensive and timely reports and advocacy documents (such as op-eds, briefing memos, submissions to international bodies, statements, and testimony) that highlight the impact of fair trials abuses on the lives of individuals caught up in European criminal justice systems and place fair trials abuses in the broader political, social and economic contexts.
• Support the Communications Officer and the Legal and Policy Team with communications with the general public in Europe, including efforts to direct occasional requests for assistance to the correct sources, develop notes of advice and other written materials targeting the general public, and produce advocacy films and other multimedia content designed to promote fair trials issues and concerns to a wider audience.
• Represent Fair Trials in meetings with government officials, opinion leaders, regional fora and agencies, and in civil society networks of which Fair Trials is a member.
• Assist the Campaigns and Communications Manager (based in the London office) in the development and implementation of Fair Trials’ international campaigns to seek improved laws, policies and practices covering Fair Trials’ core themes and to end injustice.
• Lead in the development and implementation of Fair Trials’ Europe-focused campaigns and advocacy efforts, targeting regional fora and agencies, including the European Union, Council of Europe and Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, on common European fair trials issues.
• Support and coordinate local partner NGOs and members of Fair Trials’ Legal Experts Advisory Panel across Europe in the development and implementation of campaign and advocacy strategies targeting specific issues identified at the national level.
Management and development
• Coordinate and implement multi-country and multi-partner projects and activities aimed at documenting individual fair trials abuses or at developing national or regional campaign and advocacy strategies to end abusive practices, including ensuring timely delivery of project outputs and required financial and narrative reporting.
• Assist in the development and drafting of fundraising applications for Fair Trials’ work in Europe, taking the lead to develop and draft fundraising applications of particular relevance to the Campaigns and Communications Team.
• Work with the Regional Director (Europe) and the global Campaigns and Communications Team to monitor the effectiveness and impact of the campaigns and communications work.
• Ensure that the contacts database contains accurate and up to date information on European Campaigns and Communications contacts.
• Carry out any other duties commensurate with the post.
• Promote and implement Fair Trials’ equal opportunities policy in all aspects of work
• An advanced (graduate) degree in social sciences, international relations or journalism (or commensurate experience) is required.
• A degree in law is not required, though knowledge of criminal justice systems gained through undergraduate or post-graduate courses or through professional experience would be advantageous.
• A minimum of five years of professional experience relevant to the position is required, with demonstrable experience conducting challenging investigative research being highly desirable.
• Experience that would be most relevant includes work as an investigative journalist, investigator in a national- or international-level criminal justice system, or as a social science or human rights researcher conducting field-based research.
• Experience designing, implementing and/or coordinating human rights-related campaigns, while not required, is advantageous.
• Experience with managing grants from statutory donors and the development of funding applications to them, while not required, is also advantageous.
• Excellent written and verbal communication skills, including the ability to convey complex technical issues clearly and succinctly to a non-expert audience.
• Ability and sensitivity to conduct interviews with a wide range of people, including suspects and accused persons, their families, victims, witnesses and institutional actors in criminal justice systems.
• Ability to design and implement field-based monitoring or research activities, and to coordinate a diverse range of actors in multiple locations in the carrying out of research activities.
• Ability to multi-task effectively, including having good planning and organizing skills, and to produce high-quality results under time pressure.
• A team worker, able to build effective relationships and work collaboratively with people across, and outside, the organisation.
• Professional fluency in the English language required, with fluency in another European language (particularly Russian) a distinct advantage.
• Right to work in Belgium is required.
For full details of the job, please see the candidate briefing and job description.
How to apply?
To apply for this role, please send a CV and cover letter identifying how you meet the job description to firstname.lastname@example.org by 9am (CET) on Monday 17 April 2017.